Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Dog killed on Dollar Mountain

Cougar or coyote could have been responsible


By GREG MOORE
Express Staff Writer

    A beagle killed on the Elkhorn side of Dollar Mountain just over a week ago was apparently the victim of a cougar.
    Boise resident Molly Munster said she was taking her dog, Bindi, for a walk on Sunday, Nov. 2, near the Elkhorn Golf Course driving range when Bindi ran up and down the hill barking.
    “The third time she went up there, she started barking ferociously and baying,” said Sunny Hodge, a friend of Munster’s. “We had never heard her barking like that before.”
Hodge said that after the third time, Bindi did not return. A search resulted in Bindi’s discovery about 45 minutes later. Hodge said the skin on one side of Bindi’s body had been pulled back and there were puncture wounds on her neck.
    Jim Bailey, another friend of Munster’s, said he took photos of the body and showed them to Department of Fish and Game officials in Boise. He said they told him the wounds appeared to have been caused by a mountain lion. Later in the week, a hiker reported that he found the partly eaten carcass of an elk on the Elkhorn side of Dollar.
    However, local Fish and Game Conservation Officer Lee Garwood said the diagnosis was not conclusive and the dog could have been killed by a coyote. He said there is a pair of coyotes in the area and he has received two reports over the past few years of coyotes in that vicinity chasing small dogs. He said he also receives a couple of reports every winter of a mountain lion in the area.
    “Anywhere we have deer or elk we probably have a cat circulating in the area,” Garwood said. “Whatever it was basically defended itself. It’s a good reminder that we live in wild country and we should keep dogs on a leash or keep them as close as we can.”
Greg Moore: gmoore@mtexpress.com




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